Coconut Cake – airy, light, baked from scratch, delicious yellow cake loaded and covered with sweetened toasted coconut flakes and cream cheese frosting. A wonderful Easter dessert to satisfy your sweet tooth and celebrate life!
Nothing says Easter than beautiful layers of coconut cake smothered in cream cheese frosting and coconut flakes. This cake and my Carrot Pineapple Cake usually sits right next to each other ready to be sliced through by friends and family. Yes, one cake would never be enough when we celebrate Easter in our house.
After all the fasting and praying, a good array of desserts is a great way to celebrate the rebirth of Christ and for a new life.
Glad one of my cousins brought this to my attention – why haven’t I shared on the blog one of our favorite cakes. In case you haven’t noticed, I’m a sucker for anything with coconut. And this Coconut Cake here is what every coconut lovers would dream of. 😉
Coconut Cake is a popular dessert in the Southern part of the U.S. Due to its popularity, it would only make sense how this cake has lots of variations. But I’d like to keep it simple.
Don’t be intimidated by layered cakes! This cake here is a fail-proof for newbies aaaand since I want you to experience the joy and ease of baking this over-the-top cake, I included a video on how to whip this up. Fair enough?
Aside from the fact that it’s light and airy, this cake here isn’t just frosted with coconut flakes, but you also get to enjoy bits of toasted sweetened coconut flakes in the cake to add more “coconut-y” flavor on top of the coconut milk.
How can you resist a cake with a triple coconut threat? No, you simply shove it down to your throat slice after slice. Calories? Nah, it’s not a good time to be counting those. After all, celebrating a new life also means eating desserts to your heart’s content.
Now go make all the happy memories with your life one slice at a time.
Watch How to Make It
Tips and Notes:
- You may add 1 teaspoon almond extract, or coconut extract , for additional flavor , together with vanilla extract.
- When beating egg whites to soft peak, separate them first when they are cold and let them sit in room temperature before beating them. Soft peak means that when you turn your whisk upside down, the beaten egg whites are starting to hold but would melt back after a few seconds.
- Do not confuse coconut milk with coconut cream. Coconut milk is an extracted liquid through simmering equal parts of water and shredded coconut meat. Coconut cream on the other hand is extracted from the same manner only that it’s 4 parts coconut JUICE to 1 part water.
- A good coconut milk has a clean, white, rich color with a creamy taste and is mildly sweet with the essence of coconut. You can prep your own homemade coconut milk HERE or simply buy those canned ones at a local grocery store.
- Let the cake stand in the counter for 30 minutes before slicing it.
- For non conventional version of this coconut cake, you can always add flavor to this cake by filling it with lemon curd to add a tart flavor.
- 10 ounce (283 grams) unsalted butter
- 1 ¾- 2 cups (400 grams) granulated sugar
- 6 large egg yolks
- 2 1/2 cups (266.5 grams) all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon (4 grams) salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup (240 grams) coconut milk (see notes)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract (see notes)
- 6 large egg whites (beaten to soft peaks) (see notes)
- 1- 1 ½ cup coconut flakes, or more for garnishing
Cream Cheese Frosting
- 4 ounce (113 grams ) unsalted butter , softened
- 8 ounce (225 grams) cream cheese , softened
- 4-6 cups (440-660 grams) powdered (icing) sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Bake 1- 1 ½ cup coconut flakes in the oven on 350 degrees F, for about 10 minutes until some parts turn brown. Let it cool . You may do this a couple of days in advance
- Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/325°F. Grease a 2 9 inch pan generously with cooking spray and set aside.
- Cream together the butter and sugar at high speed in a stand mixer until it’s fluffy and starting to look white – about 4 to 5 minutes.
- Stir in the egg yolks, beating the mixture well between each addition. Sift in the flour, salt and baking powder into the batter, and then add coconut milk and vanilla extract.
- Continue mixing , then add coconut flakes well until everything is fully combined. Add coconut flakes , mix well.
- Using a mixer beat egg whites until you get a soft peak . Fold in with the rest of the batter . DO NOT over mix.
- Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl.
- Pour batter into the greased cake pans into 2 equal parts. Tap pans on work surface to eliminate any large air bubbles.
- Bake at 325 F until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean – about 30-35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack.
Cream Cheese Frosting (Double the Frosting if you like a thick coat like in the picture)
- Whisk cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until creamy. You may use a mixer, if desired.
Pre-heat the oven to 160°C/325°F. Grease a 2 9 inch pan generously with cooking spray and set aside. Cream together the butter and sugar at high speed in a stand mixer until it’s fluffy and starting to look white – about 4 to 5 minutes.
Stir in the egg yolks, beating the mixture well between each addition. Sift in the flour, salt and baking powder into the batter.
And then add coconut milk and vanilla extract. Continue mixing.
Then add coconut flakes well until everything is fully combined. Add coconut flakes, mix well. Using a mixer beat egg whites until you get a soft peak.
Fold in with the rest of the batter. DO NOT over mix. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl. Pour batter into the greased cake pans into 2 equal parts. Tap pans on work surface to eliminate any large air bubbles.
Bake at 325 F until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean – about 30-35 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack. For the cream cheese frosting, whisk cream cheese, butter and vanilla until creamy. You may use a mixer, if desired. If you like a thick coat like in the picture just double it. And start assembling the cake.